January 6th, 2008
10:10 AM ET
12 years ago

O'Reilly gets in confrontation with Obama staffer

O'Reilly got into a confrontation with an Obama staffer Saturday.

O'Reilly got into a confrontation with an Obama staffer Saturday.

(CNN) - Fox News talk show host Bill O'Reilly had a confrontation with a staffer for Barack Obama’s campaign that the aide and several eyewitnesses claim became physical.

The incident began when O’Reilly tried to get Obama’s attention after a Nashua campaign event. He allegedly began yelling at Obama’s National Trip Director Marvin Nicholson to get out of the way. O’Reilly then, according to eyewitness accounts, shoved the staffer.

Nicholson told CNN O'Reilly grabbed him by the arm and started "pushing" him. Nicholson also said that when he asked O'Reilly to stop pushing him, the talk-show host responded that he was "low class."

O’Reilly soon got Obama’s attention, and the two men spoke briefly.

"They shook hands and Mr. O'Reilly said that he thought Sen. Obama was great and that he loved him, and he'd love to have him on the show," Nicholson said. "And then the senator said that he would think about coming on the show after the primaries."

Then the Secret Service intervened to ask O’Reilly to step back behind the barricade that marked the press area.

Speaking later on Fox News, O'Reilly said he tried to "gently remove" the Obama staffer so his camera could get a shot of the Illinois senator.

"We're sorry we had to have that little confrontation," O'Reilly added, "but no one on this earth is going to block a shot on The O'Reilly Factor. It is not going to happen."

Related video: Obama aide: O'Reilly shoved me

- CNN's Chris Welch contributed to this report

soundoff (775 Responses)
  1. ginny

    O'Reilly is a legend in no other mind than his own, he is delusional if he thinks that what he says actually matters. Fox is fast becoming the Dinosaur channel.

    January 6, 2008 01:34 am at 1:34 am |
  2. dick bohanon

    the koolaid drinkers dont understand
    that bill is a self -important pompous brown noser
    critical thinkers pick up on that seconds after he speaks.
    assault charges would only give him a platform.
    ignore him-you cant change a mind that doesn't want to learn.
    refrain from any news corp media-they cannot be trusted
    vote for anyone but a republican and we will be fine
    (or at least better than the last seven years)

    January 6, 2008 01:36 am at 1:36 am |
  3. jenny_3262000

    They'd best get used to this sort of thing. When a candidate runs for president of the United States, National Enquirer and every taboid reporter will be in the face of any of these candidates and into their past lives, their family's past lives, and will make mince meat out of all of them. It's just politics in the U.S. and that's the way it's always been. No one is above this so if they're mad now, they're really going to be mad going forward. These reporters have first amendment rights and they use them. It would be best for everyone involving themselves in these campaigns to get out of their way and answer their questions and not block any shots. Enquiring minds want to know and expect to know. The media and press are our eyes and ears and report to us to make decisions. We like it that way. No one gets a free pass or gets to scream foul play with the press. We like it that way.

    January 6, 2008 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  4. sabena khanna

    Obama seemd to have nothing of substance to say in the debate except bring the American people in(for what a party- sarcasm)He seemed to have absolutely no plan whatsoever.
    Hilary Clinton was absolutely great. She answered everything very well.Especially how she had a much better record of change than anybody else.
    Edward was not appealing at all as he just kept on talking about attacking the lobbyists.

    January 6, 2008 01:47 am at 1:47 am |
  5. Joe


    January 6, 2008 01:47 am at 1:47 am |
  6. JJ Jax FL

    Bill O'Reilly, talking about how 'no one will block a shot'...who watches your show anyway?(With that said who watches FOX News PERIOD?)

    January 6, 2008 01:52 am at 1:52 am |
  7. Doug, New Jersey

    Ha ha CNN cherry picking, many times I have posted comments that were in no way attacks on anyone, yet they were never put up. Just check out the lib-bot hate against one of the very few honest journalists in America today, libs hate it when someone tells the truth. Neilson tells the truth, libs then have to lie about it and spin it, true to their ideology

    January 6, 2008 02:01 am at 2:01 am |
  8. william

    why are we talking about that ass

    January 6, 2008 02:02 am at 2:02 am |
  9. Fred

    Bill O'Reilly should have been arrested for assault.

    With the sexual assault charges on a staffer, it would have nicely packaged the moron for his brain dead audience.

    January 6, 2008 02:03 am at 2:03 am |
  10. dilmont

    Where was the Secret Service? If anyone had even frowned at Bush, they'd be face first into a snowbank within seconds.

    January 6, 2008 02:03 am at 2:03 am |
  11. Randy

    Papa bear thinks he's amazing because he managed to override all normal human rationality and convince himself that he's in the "middle" of the political spectrum. The man is awful...a disgusting percentage of what he says is either a flat out lie, a gross misinterpretation of the facts, deliberately twisting the facts, or reporting statistics in a misleading way...the last one is especially abhorrent because he uses his ignorance and callous disregard for the truth as a way to take advantage of the layman's limited knowledge of statistics (stats are VERY easy to word so they sound very positive). The man has no sense of humor to speak of (didn't even get the joke on the Colbert Report...he thought it was serious i think). I'm a peace loving person who would enjoy nothing more than to end every squabble and hatred on earth and just have us all relaaaaxxxxx...but he pushes me to the point where i can say that if a secret service agent pulled a handgun and emptied a clip into Papa Bear's chest, I not only wouldn't have cared, I would have LAUGHED til I passed out. Then again, it'd probably be hard for a bullet to penetrate into a ball of stony black ice.

    January 6, 2008 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  12. Chris

    Someone should shove a taser up Bill's arse and leave it plugged in.

    January 6, 2008 02:08 am at 2:08 am |
  13. Turner

    I am suprise the security allowed O'Reilly to get that close. Bill O'Reilly should have been arrested. People like this get no respect.

    January 6, 2008 02:09 am at 2:09 am |
  14. seg

    Well, to be fair and balanced . . . After listening to Mr. O'Reilly's side on his program tonight, it does sound like O'Bama's guy intentionally blocked Billo's cameraman TWICE . . . not exactly an invitation to be 100% civil.

    January 6, 2008 02:11 am at 2:11 am |
  15. kane

    he shoulg go back to college and learn how to behave

    January 6, 2008 02:12 am at 2:12 am |
  16. Jim, Los Angeles CA

    Well, the "present" voting Barak Hussein Obama did not mind. I guess his staffer does not mind either, being pushed around.

    I understand that Bill Clinton is cooking up some ammo against Obama....and soon enough we'll see the Obama's backside in this race.

    January 6, 2008 02:12 am at 2:12 am |
  17. Sensible Joe, Gainesville FL

    One hopes the staffer presses charges. O'Reilly needs to be taught a lesson in manners and learn to keep his hands to himself.

    January 6, 2008 02:16 am at 2:16 am |
  18. wray swanson

    Well... the world is upside down. The news media is filled with professional
    'know it alls' – about everything. Why not simply elect the likes of Bil O'Reilly to
    the position of American President. Just think of all the time, money, effort that
    would be saved. Besides... all the world's problems would quickly be solved.
    The Fox TV empire certainly is living up to its name. The fox in the chicken coop.
    Bill O'Reilly is America's new Don Rickles.... Don is amusing, Bill's all ass.

    January 6, 2008 02:23 am at 2:23 am |
  19. interesting

    Isn't it interesting when the staff of a presidential candidate attempts to shove away a member of the media? I don't like O'Reilly myself, but could you imagine G.W. sending his staff out to the press pool to shove Helen Thomas? I wonder if CNN would report that the same way? Obama doesn't want to be asked tough questions, and he knew that is exactly what foxnews/O'Reilly would do. Nobody in the press should have to shove their way to a candidate, no matter who they are.

    January 6, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  20. Donald Gregory

    Uh huh... And the spin stops here. Hmmm.

    January 6, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  21. mike Ordaz

    I was listening to the debates today and Borack Obama said that the middle class is 75,000 and he's wrong. The middle class is 35,000. Anything below 25,000 is low income for single parent or person due to the fact on medical costs, gas, food, etc. In conclusion, after hearing the debates, I am supporting Hilary Clinton for presidency. My name is Mike Ordaz and I am from Costa Mesa California.

    January 6, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  22. sam

    Barak Hassan Obama if elected will bethe first Muslim president of America.

    Why does he hide his religion? His father was a Muslim so he too is a mulsim.
    He spent his childhood in largest muslim country Malasia.

    Why does he paint balck the truth?

    He should be proud of his family religion not denounce it.

    Also Barak used Cocain and was a heavy smoker ? Gave up smoking just recently. How can you trust his judgement?

    Ok he is a better talker, he is attractive. Ok So was George W. Bush when he ran against Gore. It takes a lot to lead the US out of this Bushes miserably policies.

    Barak need to be honest with the American people.

    You cant just say work together, Like Bush said 2000, what is your record ?

    January 6, 2008 02:33 am at 2:33 am |
  23. bobby

    Oreilly has turned into a BIG IRISH bully. Maybe he needs to have more "dirty" phone conversations? Maybe his guest he has on weekly can tell his "body language" of his recent arrogant tirade? Is Bill going through a "britney" moment?
    Enough said.

    January 6, 2008 02:45 am at 2:45 am |
  24. kmostrach

    What a moron.

    January 6, 2008 03:05 am at 3:05 am |
  25. Taif

    1) When would somebody begin to define affordability as it relates to health insurance?
    2) When would the Republicans learn that the hate mongering against us Americans stems directly from our pompous foreign policy?
    3) Why is it that one, as citizen of this country, excepting the right to vote, do not have anything to show for it that distinguishes one from the green-card resident? This goes especially to healthcare.
    4) “What’s experience got to do with it?—you do not put new wine in old wine bag.” Change is what this Nation needs. Changes take place everyday, even in this administration—when things are not working, we must habitually change away from them. What is not working with our Nation today is fundamentally this government that is being worked by the old school. We should not put new wine in old wine bag—sound reasoning that, exactly, neither old-school nor status-quo experience is what we need today—we do not need the same thing all over again! We need conciliation with the rest of the world, socially and environmentally, and in every which other way, with a tolerable and viable foreign policy that is fair and agreeable to all. We need new people in new government, not experience.

    January 6, 2008 03:09 am at 3:09 am |
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